A work-in-progress render of the scene and 50 frame animated geometry for an augment of door/entry area to Dr Softain’s laboratory. Thematically, this scene takes place around the same time as Dr Softain’s emergency broadcast.
The modelling is based on measurements and reference photos taken at the scene. The animated door opening was achieved by creating a simple bone system, skinning the mesh and then animated the bones. I did this because I thought animated rigid geometry wasn’t supported by Aurasma Studio. I was wrong. Animated rigid geometry is supported by Aurasma Studio. I may continue to use bones to animate the opening of the door and other geometry that makes up the scene.
If all goes to plan, the final .dae export and augment with Aurasma Studio of the alternate animated door/entry area should replace the real door/entry area entirely.
Work to be completed
The completed scene will be made up of a partially visible collapsed Dr Softain, handing lights and elements such as strange equipment and tools you may expect to find in a laboratory. I’m also considering replacing animated versions of the fridge and bin seen in the reference photos. Each element will need to be low-poly and combined with other geometry into a single mesh to meet the 3D guidelines for Aurasma Studio. Further visual effects such as dirt, spilt chemicals, blood etc will be painted onto 512 x 512 material that is then applied to the mesh. The animation looks a bit stiff, so I’ll give that a bit of tweak too!
Thinking out loud
Sketching out the door/entry scene and thinking about the limitations of designing and developing augments. There’s something about them that makes them merely passive observational pieces. They seem read-only. Web 1.0. Augments and the fictional layer should be read/write by those who interact with the space. That’s more web 2.0 – beyond. I guess that’s the challenge. Integrate them into/with something else where action is required and/or make the diorama read/write.
An example of the type of elements that could used in the scene.
An example of the type of elements that could used in the scene.
One day everything changed. Something went wrong in Dr Softain’s laboratory. An experimental medical procedure went awry. An outbreak. Amidst all the chaos and confusion Dr Softain recorded his final broadcast. An emergency broadcast warning us of an unknown peril.
Outside Dr Softain’s laboratory
All that was remained was a pool of blood and Dr Softain’s laboratory pass.
I recorded and edited Dr Softain’s emergency video on my iPad. I then used Aurasma to create the video augment. Early one morning I set up the installation made up of the pool of blood, Softain’s lab pass, iPad with Aurasma and instructions outside a fire door in the kitchen of my workplace and then waited for work colleagues to discover the installation as they visited the kitchen for their morning coffee.
Thinking about it, this wasn’t really an augment. It didn’t augment reality with a fictional layer. The layer was simply triggered, much like a QR code. Also the metaphorical container for displaying the augment was wrong. Lame. A better augment would have been to animate the pool of blood or design an intercom to display the video. The situation was also goofy. This kind of scenario (minus the zombies) could be used as an element of a larger campus-wide activities such as student induction or OHS/ workplace hazard identification audit.
Putting it together
I used my iPad to shoot the video and then edited the video and overdubbed my own sound effects with Pinnacle Studio 2.0.
I’m interested in exploring the use of augmented reality (AR) in learning experiences. I’ve decided to prototype my early simple AR experiments with Processing and Blender. These early explorations will make use of augments placed with fiducial markers. My goal is to then explore developing AR learning experiences with Layar that can then be viewed through iOS and Android mobile devices. I’d then like to explore placing augments without using fiducial markers. These augment could be determined by location. One step at a time.
I used Processing, Blender and NyARToolkit to create this very simple zombie wound augment. This needs a bit more work as the augment is displaying bounding box information and the low-poly modelling is not as smooth as it should be. The augment could be made to look a little more integrated with my body with improved modelling and texturing. That will come with the next iteration.
Days later or maybe even weeks later is a concept for a collaborative workplace/institute/teaching centre-wide activity for staff and students designed to mend the physical and psychological effects of the Victorian government’s $300 million in cuts from the state’s TAFE sector. Physical and psychological effects could include closure of campuses, a reduction of courses being offered and job cuts.
This blog post contains exerpts from a conversation about the concept I had with myself on our organisation’s Yammer network. This blog post attempts to consolidate the concept.
I saw the activity taking place after the catastrophic event. It could’ve been 28 days later or even 28 weeks later. It doesn’t really matter. Just as long as the scenario provides an exposition, defines the goal(s) to be achieved by staff and students and also describes the resources/materials that are available for use.
I saw the activity involving the every staff member and their respective teaching centre. From the top to the bottom of the organisational chart. The CEO would actually play a pivotal role in activity. They would be responsible for broadcasting/providing updates on the progress of the activity. These updates would also allow activity facilitators to adjust the activity if/when required.
I saw each teaching centre being responsible for helping students contribute a specific artefact or service from their particular area of expertise. The artefact or service (and production of) would contribute to the activity while also satisfying the students scholastic assessment requirements.
Nothing about the activity changes the need for students to demonstrate their skills and provide evidence of their competence. It’s just their output or artefact may change, but not how they work through the process of creating the artefact.
I didn’t want the activity to involve only our Australian based campus. I wanted the activity to be inclusive. What better way to reach out to our state and international counterparts than a part in a inter-campus activity.
Hospitality Tourism planning is highly complex and requires integrated and flexible approaches. The activity would reflect the typical nature of each particular area of study. for example, hospitality and tourism is a complex industry that requires flexible approaches and unique problem solving skills, particularly in the context of responding to a natural disaster. Real-world examples that require application of employability skills and dimensions of competency.
Scientist area always important in an activity involving zombies. They serve as one of the last hopes – finding a cure!
The activity would take place in real time and play-out over an entire semester, perhaps even the entire scholastic year. Although maintaining momentum over this period of time could be difficult. The pacing of the narrative would be informed by the deliverables of each course.
Testing the activity on a teaching centre could be a good way to identify issues.
Then I realised. Yes. This is a zombie game.
This activity would take place openly and in public. Non-students and staff would be able to observe the progress of the activity via the organisation’s website. Completing the activity publicly gives people the opportunity to see the work the students and staff are doing together (Outside an open day, showcase or expo context).
Then I realised the zombie metaphor is problematic.
Staff and students are not to blame for the funding cuts.
Although the activity may not be completely appropriate at this point in time, I do think there is potential for a collaborative workplace/institute/teaching centre-wide activity for staff and students to occur.
The description for the official Unicorn City trailer on Youtube describes the protagonist as ‘a hard core gamer creates a Utopian society based on rules of table top gaming in a desperate attempt to prove to a prospective employer that he has leadership skills.‘ The creation of a utopian society by the protagonist is a clear demonstration of the protagonist’s Transfer skills. Transfer skills are the capacity to transfer skills and knowledge to other contexts. These skills make up one of the dimensions of competency that need to be demonstrated by learners participating in Australian vocational education and training. Dimensions of competency are the knowledge and attitudes required to apply technical skills to regular and irregular workplace situations. Other dimensions of competency are:
Task skills – Undertaking and completing the specific tasks that make up the whole work activity as well as completing the individual actions that make up the task, such as identifying or classifying tasks to be completed.
Task management skills – Efficiently managing a number of different tasks to complete a whole work activity, such as evaluating the whole work activity, prioritising tasks to be completed and then continue to review or monitor the completion of each task and whole work activity.
Contingency management skills – Responding to problems or issues related to completing tasks in the workplace, such as changes in routine, unexpected results or outcomes from task or difficult and problematic clients.
Job/Role environment skills - Responding and managing workplace responsibilities and expectations, such as working with colleagues, interacting with clients and suppliers, complying with organisational procedures or meeting industry benchmarks.
What is it?
Darfur is Dying is mtvU’s Darfur refugee game for change that “provides a window into the experience of the 2.5 million refugees in the Darfur region of Sudan. Players must keep their refugee camp functioning in the face of possible attack by Janjaweed militias. Players can also learn more about the genocide in Darfur that has taken the lives of 400,000 people, and find ways to get involved to help stop this human rights and humanitarian crisis.”
Why so Serious (Game)?
To successfully meet the challenge of maintaining the function of a refugee camp under the threat of possible attack by Janjaweed militias, the player needs to:
A game that deals with conflict and civil unrest clearly has no winner. Darfur is dying provides an insight into the life of people living in the Darfur region of Western Sudan during the civil war in Darfur. Throughout the game the player is prompted with education points and information on how they can help stop the crisis in Darfur. This game is successful in creating an awareness and reaction to a situation which would not normally receive much attention from mainstream media.
An interesting approach to an anti-graffiti community service announcement by a local City Council. I’m curious if the outside of the bus is the most effective location for this kind of message. Would the outside of the bus be seen by the intended audience of this message. Are the target audience more likely to be inside the bus? Perhaps locating the community service announcement outside the bus ensures the message is exposed to as many people as possible.
I didn’t see inside the bus, but I reckon this kind of message (framed in the format that it’s warning against) could also be placed inside the bus and perhaps be more likely be seen by the intended audience.
Concept for an interactive device that demonstrates how slope of the land under classified vegetation determines the severity of a bushfire.
The learner can increase or decrease the angle of the upslope and downslope. As a result the severity of the approaching bushfire will change. The bushfire’s severity is based on a premise of the fire’s intensity doubling for each 10° rise in slope.
Concept for an interactive device that demonstrates how the distance of vegetation from a building determines the level of bushfire risk to the building. The learner can select a vegetation type, increase or decrease the distance of vegetation from the building and increase or decrease the angle of the slope. The Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) rating, description and level of bushfire risk for permutations of the vegetation, distance and slope variables are displayed based on learner interaction. The BAL rating, description and level of bushfire risk to building is based on data from the Australian Standard AS 3959–Construction of buildings in bushfire-prone areas.
Updated working drawing for the Distance of vegetation demonstration with amended distance and slope controls. Show risk consent button has been removed.
Updated working drawing for the Distance of vegetation demonstration with sequencing instructions.
Original working drawing for the Distance of vegetation demonstration
I was crossing the street during my lunch break the other day when a piece of graffiti written on a pole nearby caught my attention. The graffiti read Listen to Black Sabbath. This immediately made me think about two things.
The author’s direction for me to listen to Black Sabbath made me think about the importance of clear instruction when we ask a learner to complete a task. Sure, the author had described what they wanted me to do (listen to Black Sabbath), but they didn’t tell me how I supposed do it. I guess the author assumed that anyone who read their instruction would’ve had an understanding of how they were to carry out the instruction. This might be ok if the author was around to provide additional information about how to complete the task, but in this case they were nowhere to be seen.
When we ask a learner to complete a task we need to remember to give them enough instructional support to allow them to complete or at the very least attempt the task. It’s the what (you want the learner to do) and the how (they can do it) that needs to be made clear to the learner.